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Where are the stats to show this 50% recidivism rate everyone keeps mentioning? Seems to be the norm, but it's false, based on the Department of Justice which shows 5.3%.
A new sex offender registration law is set to take effect on Jan. 1, 2008, and local law enforcement officials are saying it is going to cost more money and give judges less discretion.
Stark County Common Pleas Judge Richard Reinbold said he isn’t happy with state legislators. The new law will dictate how he performs his job and mandate hearings without providing any funding.
Sex offenders have been classified into three categories:
- Tier one – Sexually Orientated Offender: a person who has been convicted of, or has pleaded guilty to, a sexually-oriented offense, but who has not been designated as a sexual predator or habitual sex offender. Sexually-oriented offenders must register for 10 years, but neighbors are not notified.
- Tier two – Habitual Sex Offender: a person who has been convicted of, or has pleaded guilty to, a sexually oriented offense, to one or more sexually oriented offenses and must register for 20 years after release from prison. The judge may determine whether community notification is necessary.
- Tier three – Sexual Predator: a person who has been convicted of, or has pleaded guilty to, a sexually oriented offense and who is likely in the future to commit additional sexually oriented offenses. The offender must be convicted with a sexually violent predator specification, or the court can determine the offender is a sexual predator during a hearing. Sexual predators must register for life and the community is notified of their presence.
National and state legislators cite the high rate at which sex offenders recommit their offenses – the national average is 50 percent – and the need to standardize laws across the country.
- And this 50% is total BS! Visit the Department of Justice, which shows 5.3% and sex offenders are LESS likely to commit another sex crime after being released than other criminals.
Reinbold said he thinks sex offender registration laws are good overall. By seeing the criminals on a daily basis, Reinbold said, he knows how to minister punishment better than legislators.
“I will have no discretion as a judge,” Reinbold said of the law, adding sometimes discretion in sentencing is needed. For example, he said, a 19-year-old man who has sex with a 15-year-old female shouldn’t necessarily be branded a sex offender for years.
- I agree... So why do we even need judges?
“I’m here day after day, he said. “I guess they think they can do this job better than we do. People will end up suffering for this change in the law.”
- They are already suffering, believe me!!!
Reinbold said when someone is labeled a sex offender, it makes it that much harder for the person to find a job and a place to live, especially as communities place more restriction on areas where sex offenders can’t live.
“Already, we’re seeing a good number of sex offenders who are homeless or semi-homeless,” Reinbold said. “The new law is just going to make that worse. We’re going to need more jail space and the cost for social programs will go up.”
The taxpayers, he said, will have to foot the bill.
- And they should, they are the non-thinking idiots who wanted all this BS, so they should pay for it...
Another glaring problem, the judge said, is the high recidivism rates for sex offenders and the lack of treatment programs in all prisons.
- Again, the recidivism rate IS NOT HIGH, it's 5.3%, not 50% like everyone believes. Where is this 50% statistic, and who did the research?
“That’s an oversight by legislators,” Reinbold said. “The big problem is trying to find solutions.”
Costs for administering the registration program will go up for the sheriff departments, Reinbold said.
Chryssa Hartnett, assistant chief prosecutor of Stark County’s criminal division, said costs for the prosecutor’s office will also go up because every sex offender who is reclassified is entitled to a new hearing.
She said she believes most offenders will fight reclassification and no one seems to have thought about the time and the cost that will take.
- You darn straight they will. It's punishment after the fact, thus violating the ex post facto clause of the United States Constitution for punishing someone twice for the same crime.
Just the mere fact of getting prisoners to court from prison is going to cost money, Reinbold said. “The legislators never think about these things,” he said. “What do they think, gas is free?”